Last updated on October 16, 2023
Halloween is celebrated in Italy but it’s not that big thing that you would expect especially if you are reading this post from the US. It is becoming more and more popular but it looks mostly like an opportunity for candy companies to sell more of their mouthwatering treats.
Halloween is celebrated in Italy by kids and adults alike
Halloween in Italy is not that big thing. Who’s writing never celebrated this particular feast when at primary school. No trick or treating nor scary costumes. The 1st of November is a national holiday in Italy as the Italian people celebrates all the Saints listed on the Gregorian calendar. This means that schools were closed, as they still are nowadays, so for us it was just like a regular saturday night.
Growing up the night of the 31st of October became the opportunity to spend some time in club or bar with high school friends. Here in Milan we had a thing called “One Night”: we just went partying in this or that club and that was basically it.
Then pushed by the confectionery industry and by some smart marketing manager Halloween suddenly become something to party about. Supermarkets and grocery stores started to display skull-shaped pastries and non edible pumpkins for decorations.
Counting on the insistence of childern when they see chocolates wrapped in funny aluminium foils, the industry kept on insisting every year in producing and promoting their Halloween products.
Nowadays Halloween is celebrated in Italy by both teenagers and children but do not expect any trick or treating going around. Italians do not seem to be that enthusiasts about this all American tradition.
It is just something that we do given that the day after schools and offices are closed. The kids are happy to receive some extra candies and might dress up for a party at the local parish. That’s it!
What is Halloween called in Italy?
As we said Halloween is not popular in Italy and Italians do not do anything special to celebrate it. It is just an opportunity to spend some time with your kids and have some extra candies in your pockets. But the fesat of All Saints is actually a big deal. Being a (kind of) Catholic country when it comes to religious holidays the Italian tend to celebrate most of the times with food.
Halloween in Italy is called “Festa di Ognissanti”(The feast of Alla Saints) and there are two particular types of food that become kind of popular from the last days of October to the first week of November: Pan dei Morti (the bread of deads) and the Torta Peasana.